Lower Town apartments for upper class residents


Toxic waste barrels, such as these ones are currently located at the Lowertown site. They probably contain material tainted with TCE.

Those who took a FOS 1 class have all done a project of thinking about developing the Lower Town plot of land. It seemed that the plot of land would remain by the name of “People’s Park”. Recently, there was a new herd of animals in the park: construction equipment.

“It was not the best use of land,” said FOS 1 teacher Courtney Kiley.  “Some of the ideas the kids have come up with are better than this.”

Courtney Kiley is standing in front of the door on the 3rd floor computer lab. In addition to FOS classes, she leads a forum.

Kiley was referring to the Block Party assignment in which we designed how the land would be used. For example, a typical project might include cutting-edge green technology and innovative and economically diverse housing.

According to Kiley,  the Nine99 condominium does none of the above. “They start in the 400,000’s [of dollars],” Kiley said. “So the cheapest one was like half a million dollars.” This was practically the opposite of low-income housing that was proposed by many students.

“I don’t think our area needs more high-end condos,” Kiley said.

“Our students have better ideas,’ fellow FOS 1 teacher Liz Stern said.

It might seem that since Kiley teaches Ecology and leads the Ecology Club at CHS that she was upset about the destruction of the native plant sanctuary in the area. However when asked about whether the plot of land should’ve remained a park, she stated that there was another park directly across the street.

This sign is all that remains of a plant field that once stood at Lowertown.

The reason for the area being polluted was the dry cleaning business that previously occupied the plot of land. They used the chemical TCE (Tri-Chloro-Ethylene), this resulted in the area being labeled a brownfield. This was the reason nothing has been built on top of it and the several barrels labeled “Hazardous Waste” in the corner of the plot of land. “So they had to clean all that up before they could build anything residential,” Kiley said.